In Boston, a Leominster asbestos-abatement contractor from A & E Environmental is required to pay a penalty of $14,312 after it was established that they violated the asbestos regulations of their state by the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection. This is their second violation within a year’s time.
In May 2014, A & E Environmental had to pay a fine of $19,312 when they violated asbestos regulations at a residential building that was located in Millbury. A & E Environmental ended up only paying $5,000 of the penalty since MassDEP suspended the rest of it, provided that the company did not have any more violations for a year.
Unfortunately, MassDEP discovered a new asbestos violation on Dec. 30, 2014 at a job the company was working on that was located on Lake Street in Shrewsbury. A & E Environmental had failed to sufficiently seal their work area and they also failed to use a HEPA-filtered air ventilation system that is necessary to control the asbestos fibers. Since these new violations came to light, a “Demand for Payment” was issued to A & E Environmental by MassDEP to obtain the rest of the penalty that had been suspended, which was $14,312.50.
In addition to the fine, the company also is required to correct the violations at the location in Shrewsbury. MassDEP’s regulations state that the area that is being worked on must be completely sealed off and air filtration equipment must be operated while the asbestos is being removed, in addition to other stipulations. These requirements are in place to protect the public from asbestos fibers that could get released into the air and to prevent other parts of the building from becoming contaminated as well.
Before any company starts doing any type of removal work of asbestos, they are required to notify MassDEP 10 working days before the work will begin to allow MassDEP the opportunity to have a thorough inspection to make sure they are following the safety regulations.
Mary Jude Pisgley, the director of MassDEP’s Central Regional Office in Worcester stated, “Licensed asbestos abatement contractors are aware of the work practices that must be followed to conduct their work safely and in compliance with the regulations. Asbestos is a known carcinogen, and following those work practices is imperative to ensure building occupants and the general public are not exposed to asbestos fibers. Failure to do so will result in significant penalties, as well as potential licensing sanctions against the violator.”
Safely removing asbestos is critical and failure to do so can carry serious consequences. When the asbestos fibers are disturbed, harmful dust is released into the air that can then be inhaled. If you experience a prolonged exposure and if you inhale a good amount of asbestos dust, you could be at risk for developing mesothelioma, a type of cancer that is caused from exposure to asbestos.Tags: A&E, asbestos, Boston, Leominster